I wonder if there is a term for the people who instead of blaming the social situation for their victim status, in fact claim that that situation doesn't exist in the society that's why they are victims.
The other day, I heard a person complaining, if patriarchy had existed in the society then men also had the option of staying at home and becoming homemakers!
This person also had the opinion that machoism doesn't exist in the society and if it exists only a small percentage of families actually show it (basically, his definition of machoism is overt physical aggression).
This person also had the opinion that marriage is a curse for men as they can't get sex anywhere else but a boon for women.
Even though I initially wanted to tackle this case in the post from an angle how people misunderstood patriarchy, I couldn't overlook the fact that many of them have internalized the prejudices.
The first one on the list, ie., men becoming homemaker, is probably the only thing where his expectation was correct. But what he said was basically the definition of patriarchy. Everything is gendered and woman is considered lower and a man, wanted to take up a role defined as feminine in patriarchal terms, is viewed as effeminate. Basically, here an individual is a victim of patriarchy but this guy has turned the meaning on its head.
In the second case, ie., machoism, the lack of physical aggression among many middle class Indian families is taken as a common phenomenon. But India is still a brutal place for women in general and men who go beyond socially accepted norms. In fact, when it comes to women I suppose even developed countries aren't far ahead of us. There are too many microaggressions from privileged castes and classes. His male and privileged self might have escaped any such hostility but that's just a privilege blindness.
The sexual repression is an unpleasant experience for many Indian men. But I believe that could be the situation with women too. However, privileged men by heredity in olden times had no problem with this as the patriarchal rules always accepted their sexual indiscretions in different terminologies. Also, in olden times as people married in their childhood(or immediately after puberty), they never had to face the long period of sexual abstinence that the present generations of Indians have to face. So basically sexual repression is a new phenomenon in the last 50-100 years as we moved away from child marriages but didn't completely adopt the concept of sex without marriage in our society. But I suppose this is a transition period. But the way he considers it as a male only phenomenon shows a complete lack of appreciation for female sexuality and also a dream of playboy sexuality without any responsibility but only entitlement(this has given rise to many feudal liberals).
Basically, I could summarize that his sense of victimhood is built upon;
- Misunderstanding of patriarchy
- Male and caste privilege blindness
- Prejudice with female sexuality
You can rebel against the existing social norms if you are clear about the reasons behind it. But what happens in this case? I believe people who themselves are victims become inhuman about others' plight (this guy is a libertarian) is because of this reason. Instead of bringing down the phenomenon that made them victim, they are rooting for it. And these are above average people. Nobody can explain them anything.